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Press Release
June 12, 1998
Equine Placement Network, Inc.
Press Releases


Friedensburg - The PA House Judiciary Committee, chaired by Representative Thomas P. Gannon (Delaware)has scheduled hearings on HB 2127, (Lynch, R, Warren) for June 25, 1998 at the Gettysburg Hotel in Gettysburg, PA. MSNBC and The New York Post will be covering these hearings.

HB 2127 is aimed at ending the cruel and inhumane treatment of horses transported to slaughter. Pennsylvania is home to the largest weekly horse auction east of the Mississippi averaging 275 horses per week with a large percentage purchased by agents for foreign owned slaughterhouses located in Canada and Texas. The horses are slaughtered for human consumption in Europe and Japan. Horses purchased for slaughter are often transported in trailers designed to transport cattle and hogs and which do not meet equine industry standards for vehicles used to transport horses.This, in conjunction with overcrowding and a lack of segregation often cause injury and even death to the horses being transported. The lack of food, water and rest contribute to the arduous journey, making it especially inhumane for blind, sick, injured, and/or the very young or the very old. Being that enforcement of this legislation is best accomplished at the point of loading, it is imperative that Pennsylvania enact legislation that will ensure the safe and humane transport all horses, No Matter What Their Final Destination.

A tour of Hanover Shoe Farms, the all time leading breeder of Standardbred racehorses, is scheduled for the legislators the day before on June 24th. Hanover Shoe Farms is one of over 25 major PA & National equine industry organizations supporting the Equine Placement Network, a grass roots group of professional horsemen,not animal rights activists, in their effort to pass legislation that will ensure the safe and humane transport of ALL horses, No Matter What Their Final Destination.

The Equine Placement Network is calling for the following amendments to HB 2127 before they can support the bill:

  1. The vehicle safety standards MUST apply to ALL horses, not just slaughterbound. Otherwise the "killer buyers will circumvent the law by denying the horses are going to slaughter. New York law is written to apply to all horses.

  2. The definition of "Intermediate Handler" must be added so as not to affect the legitimate transport of pregnant mares, foals sick or injured horses for medical care or humane keeping.

  3. The law MUST clearly state that EACH horse is a SEPARATE offense, as in NY.

The PA cruelty statute as currently written lacks definitive standards for the safe and humane transport of horses. Enforcement would be accomplished at the point of loading, and with specific language is not a problem.

In recent months New York State has stepped up their enforcement of their transport law, put on the books over 17 auction barns into NY on their way to Canadian slaughterhouses. Kevin Nickerson of Nickerson Livestock, Bainbridge, NY chose to go to trial in Broome County and was convicted and paid the maximum fine of $3000.00. Arlow Kiehl, Watertown, NY pled guilty and paid a $500 fine.Two more cases are pending.

New York State Senator Kuhl , Chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee introduced S6332 to raise the fines for violation of Ag & Markets Law, Section 359-a. The bill has passed the Senate and is in Committee in the Assembly.

The Equine Placement Network requested and received permission from The State of New York for Trooper Thomas Garcia to testify at the hearings on HB 2127. Trooper Garcia was the arresting officer in a case in Essex County, NY in January 1994 that resulted in an $11,100 fine. The arrest earned the nickname, " the Horse Popsicle Case."


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NY State Raises Fines For Cruel Horse Transport
Horse Popsicle Case
The Torture Trail
EPN OPPOSES 3 Legged Horse Bill
PA HB 590
(Formerly HB 2127 & HB 1029)